For the benefit of Joe Miller

description below

Copy of a benefit ticket whose design was formerly attributed to Hogarth: a stage scene with four performers in Congreve’s ‘The Old Bachelor’, showing the scene in Act III where Noll receives a kicking from Sharper; print after a forgery purporting to be a benefit ticket for Joe Miller for his performance as Sir Joseph Wittol.


  • Title: For the benefit of Joe Miller [graphic] : Theatre Royal, Drury Lane. The old batchelor / W. Hogarth ft.
  • Publication: [London?] : [publisher not identified], [early 19th century?]

Catalog Record

Hogarth 800.00.00.02 Box 140

Acquired August 2020

A specimen of Mr. K**n’s acting

description below

“The actor Kean in part as Richard III appalled as his bastard son is presented to him by its mother as a beadle holds a court order for its maintenance at 7/6d a week.”–British Museum online catalogue.


  • Printmaker: Marks, John Lewis, printmaker.
  • Title: A specimen of Mr. K**n’s acting, or, A little man of great parts! [graphic].
  • Publication: London : Pubd. by J.L. Marks, 37 Princes St., Soho – and 28 Fetter Lane, Fleet Street, [ca. 1820]

Catalog Record


Acquired January 2020

The hostile press and the consequences of crim. con.

description below

“Kean, in the costume of Sir Giles Overreach, stands on the stage, indicated by a boarded floor surrounded by flame and smoke from the jaws of a semicircle of ferocious monsters, serpentine, scaly, and fanged, and with glaring eyeballs. The largest and most menacing is the Old Times, emitting Gall, Spite Venon [sic] Hypocricy. Towards this Kean directs his levelled rapier, saying, By the powers of Shakspeare, I defy ye all. He holds above his head a large open book: Shakspeare, which is irradiated. Almost as large as the ‘Times’ is the pendant to it: New Times, vomiting Hypocricy. The other monsters are not specified, they spit flames inscribed respectively: Spleen; Cant; Malignity; Slander; Spite; Envy; Malice; Nonsence; Oblique.”–British Museum catalogue.


  • Printmaker: Cruikshank, Robert, 1789-1856, printmaker.
  • Title: The hostile press and the consequences of crim. con., or, Shakspeare in danger / R. Cruikshank delt.
  • Publication: [London] : Pubd. Feby. 1825 by J. Fairburn, Broadway, Ludgate Hill, [1825 February]

Catalog Record 


Acquired January 2020

Theatre Royal

description below

A theater ticket with a scene from the play The mock doctor: Gregory, the mock doctor, holds the Charlotte’s wrist, as they look at her father who points to his mouth indicating that she is mute. The print after a forgery purporting to be an admission ticket for a performance of Fielding’s The Mock Doctor.


  • Title: Theatre Royal [graphic] : April [blank] a comedy with The mock doctor for the benefit of the author of the farce / W. Hogarth ft.
  • Publication: [London?] : [publisher not identified], [early 19th century?]

Catalog Record

Hogarth 800.00.00.01

Acquired August 2020

Bucks have at ye all

description belowA theatre scene; a man on stage holding a long cane leans towards the box stage left saying: ‘Bucks of the Boxes, sneer and talk aloud! I don’t mean you.’ The rotund young man at the front of the box says ‘Boo Boo’; he holds an unfurled sheet of paper headed ‘Fair Penitent. Lothario, by the amateur who murdered Romeo …’

  • Title: Bucks have at ye all [graphic] : with extempore additions by the amateur comic-tragedian as delivered at the Haymarket Theatre Decemr. 10, 1811.
  • Publication: London : Pubd. Decemr. 10th, 1811, by Wm. Holland, No. 11 Cockspur St., [10 December 1811]

Catalog Record 


Acquired June 2019

The theatrical atlas

Kean as Richard III, directed to the left, stands on a large volume with the word ‘Shakespear’ written on the top edge. Resting on his head and humped shoulders is a model of Drury Lane Theatre, a massive block, inscribed ‘Whitbreads Intire.’ On the roof is poised an ugly figure of Fame, blowing through a trumpet ‘Puff Puff Puff’, and holding behind her a second trumpet, from which issue the words ‘Puff Puff P’. In front straddles a tiny Whitbread, his legs and arms projecting from a cask which forms his body; he says: “Now by St Paul the work goes bravely on” (altering Richard’s words from ‘this news is bad indeed’). Kean stoops, leaning on a cross-hilted sword, inscribed ‘A Keen supporter’; he has misshapen bandy legs. He says: “Well, as you guess.” He wears an ermine-bordered cap encircled by a crown, slashed doublet and trunk hose, a sleeveless coat bordered with ermine and embroidered with a (Yorkist) rose, with flapped and spurred boots. (The figure, with the position of the arms altered, is a travesty of J.J. Hall’s portrait of Kean interrogating Stanley on the approach of Richmond. The costume is correct.) The stage is indicated by curtains flanking the design. In the background are clouds of smoke.–Adapted from British Museum.

  • PrintmakerCruikshank, George, 1792-1878, printmaker.
  • TitleThe theatrical atlas / G. Cruikshank fec.
  • Published[London] : Pubd. by H. Humphrey, St. James’s Street, May 7th, 1814.

Catalog Record


Acquired June 2017

The beaux nurses, or, The modern cramers


An allegorical representation of the nationalistic riot occasioned by a troupe of French comedians in London. This satirical print refers to the controversy and protest surrounding a French theatrical company, nicknamed the ‘French Strollers’, who applied for and were granted a licence to perform at the Haymarket in the winter of 1749. Their arrival occasioned much discontent; as the Scots Magazine reported, they were ‘bitterly pelted in the news-papers’. Asserting their right to perform, they persisted in a show on 14 November, but were met by an audience intent on sabotage. An eyewitness account of the incident appeared in the Monthly Review some years later (July 1761): ‘People went early to the Theatre, as a crouded House was certain … I soon perceived that we were visited by two Westminster Justices, Deveil and Manning. The Leaders, that had the conduct of the Opposition, were known to be there; one of whom called aloud for the song in praise of English roast beef, which was accordingly sung in the gallery, by a person prepared for that purpose; and the whole house besides joining in the chorus, saluted the close with three huzzas! This, Justice Deveil was pleased to say, was a riot’. Despite the Justice’s assertions that the play was licensed by the King’s command, the crowd had come prepared to produce disruption. They were equipped with instruments which they played discordantly as an accompaniment to their jeers, catcalls, and Francophobic songs: ‘as an attempt at speaking was ridiculous, the Actors retired, and opened instead with a grand dance of twelve men and twelve women; but even that was prepared for, and they were directly saluted with a bushel or two of peas, which made their capering very unsafe’. Unable even to dance, and following another abortive attempt by the magistrates to assert the King’s authority, the curtain fell for the final time. The eyewitness evidently relished the outcome, venturing ‘that at no battle gained over the French, by the immortal Marlborough, the shoutings could be more joyous than on this occasion’. The print embodies similar sentiments; the French strollers attack British theatrical establishment–represented by an affronted Britannia–who stands between them and British theatre-goers. In the foreground stands a perplexed Othello, lamenting the loss of his occupation, and an injured man a man lies on the floor ‘Almost kill’d for not understanding French’.

  • TitleThe beaux nurses, or, The modern cramers [graphic] : acted at the French Theatre in the Haymarket Novr. [the] 14th.
  • Publication[London : publisher not identified, not before 1749]

Catalog Record & Digital Collection


Acquired July 2016


Comic dance in the popular pantomime of The white cat

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“The clowns Kirby and Chatterley, one dressed in female costume, dancing.”–British Museum online catalogue.

  • Printmaker: Heath, William, 1795-1840, printmaker.
  • Title: Comic dance in the popular pantomime of The white cat [graphic] : by Messr. Kirby & Chatterley to the tune of The bold dragoon / draw [sic] & etched by W. Heath.
  • Published: [London] : Pub. 5th of Jany. 1812 by T. Palser, Bridge Road, Lambeth, [5 January 1812]

Catalog record & Digital collection


Acquired November 2012

Progress of a player

Progress of a player

Progress of a player section 2

Progress of a player section 3

Progress of a player section 4

A satire on the theatre, an aspiring actor is shown in eight separate scenes.
  • Author: Newton, Richard, 1777-1798, printmaker.
  • Title: Progress of a player/ designed & etched by R. Newton.
  • Published: [London] : Pub. by W. Holland Feb. 11, 1793 No. 50 Oxford Street, [11 Feb. 1793].

View catalog record
Acquired June, 2011 by the Lewis Walpole Library.